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July 4, 2014

#FBF: Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness


#FBF, Flash Book Friday, is a sporadic (told y'all it's sporadic!) meme in which I will share and discuss with you books that I've read in the past (pre-blog) that has made an impression on me. Yup, because I really need more reasons to talk about books.


DISCOVERY OF WITCHES
All Souls Trilogy 1 | Deborah Harkness | February 20


I read Discovery of Witches before I started blogging and like most books, there were parts of it that I loved and some that I didn't like as much. 

I love Deborah Harkness' prose, it's very literary and sometimes almost lyrical. I also appreciate a well researched novel especially as All Souls Trilogy has academics and scholars for heroes, Diana Bishop is a post graduate student while Matthew Clairmont is a geneticist. I know DHarkness is a college professor in real life and she really made use of her studies in the trilogy. Historical figures, facts, and significant places were carefully woven into her story and that really impressed me. 

Now Discovery of Witches was published at the height of Sookie Stackhouse, Twilight, and other vampire PNR/UF series that are fast paced, highly sexual, and filled with instant gratification. Matthew and Diana's romance leans more towards the romantic side than it is lustful and greedy, it's full of passion, devotion, and the sexual part taking a back seat. The tone of the trilogy is very literary fiction, very deliberate and compared to it's more popular counterparts, it demands to be relished and not breezed through. Discovery of Witches is definitely no cheap trashy romance, it's very smart and well written that even "snobbish" readers are won over by Matt and Diana's tale. 

That said I was one of the select few who didn't go gaga over this one. I was one of those readers who can't get enough of the fast and furious action that PNR/UF lent and I wanted more of the smexy Alpha supes the likes of Eric Northman, Jacob Black, those Caldwell BDB vamps and them Dark-Hunters and their equally vamped up consorts. Almost the complete opposite of the cool and almost highbrow pair of Matt and Diana. 

Now even if I'm not blown away by the story, I still love escaping to it. The last of the trilogy, The Book of Life, is coming soon and from the events that took place in Shadow of Night, I sure would like to know what's going to happen to Matt and Diana and how they're going to pull off their mission.

Now I know that Discovery of Witches is being developed into a movie. Because of the imagery and romanticism of the tale, I'm sure it'll make for a great film. DHarkness is very specific with her setting, myth, and world building, the holy trinity of fantasy, that only an incompetent cast, director, and production company can bungle up. Now that I'm excited for.

I have to cancel that out because I just found out (thanks for the update Bookwyrm!) that this fell through! Oh well, maybe the series could benefit from cable TV a la Outlander. Hopefully DHarkness goes that route instead.








26 comments:

  1. Oh gosh, I turned this series down (bc of a really bad review) and now I'm kicking myself! I want a big, romantic story! Thanks for showing me a different point-of-view, Braine!
    Happy 4th!

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    1. Happy fourth! I hope you had a blast yesterday and will continue to do so this weekend.

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  2. *raises hand* I loved every aspect of this one,that being said I did not read Sookie. I loved the details and the romance.

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    1. I never thought I'd say this but you're luck you didn't read Sookie!

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  3. I heart this series. It is one of my all time favs but I can totally see how with all the historical detail that it just wouldn't be for everyone. That being said, I also read and loved the Sookie Series, well, up until those last few books that is so..yeah. I guess I can go both ways.

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    1. Oooh you will LOVE this series, I'm sure you will! Go read it!!

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  5. I'm with Kimba - loved this book and series, and haven't read Sookie. I like my romances more thoughtful than fast and furious, so ADOW really appeals to me. Also, all the historical stuff, plus Oxford... swoon! Can't wait to read book 3. Nice review, Braine!

    Oh, re the movie: Sadly, the movie company returned the rights to her. So it's no longer in development. (I think she mentioned it on Facebook.) Hopefully, some other film group will be interested.

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    1. Oh really? Thanks for the update on the movie thing. It's kinda tricky to do it, I think she'd best go the cable TV route a la Outlander since these two are kinda similar with the time travel aspect.

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  6. I still have the 1st book sitting on my shelf...my job was giving away extra copies. I'm going to sit down and read it one of these days.

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    1. Gosh you are so lucky! I want your job too!!

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  7. I have read the first 2 and while they were kind of "Twilighty" in terms of the romance by my tastes, I still enjoyed the lyrical prose and the classic romance with a paranormal twist. I look forward to the next book! Lovely review Braine. I'm glad it's been recognised by those literary people.

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    1. LOL Twilight-y good god! Maybe that was subtle and prolly the reason why didn't go crazy over this on the first round.

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  8. I can't wait for book 3 to come out!!

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    1. Didn't you get the ARC? Go request it!

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  9. I still need to get to this series. Love your Flashback Meme.

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  10. Wow, I haven't really heard good or bad things about this book and series, but I am happy it left such a great impression on you.

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  11. Wow, looks like this one is pretty awesome, to even be kindlemom's favorites! This is something that I really need to try. I haven't read Sookie Stackhouse, but I am aware of the kind of Paranormal era it started and the tropes it made popular, but they don't really bother me that much, so going to give this one a try!

    Faye at The Social Potato Reviews

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    1. I've been a shortsighted reader then, blogging surely made me a better reader, kept my mind open. In retrospect, this series is pretty good, epic even.

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  12. This started out very slowly for me, especially on the romance front. But that's what I ended up loving about it, that it was a slow burn rather than bam, they're a couple. I've had Shadow of Night for forever and desperately need to catch up on the trilogy. Are you planning to read the The Book of Life close to its release?

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  13. I'm reading this now, just a little at a time, and am enjoying it okay. I'm not far in so that might be why I'm not yet in love with it. It's a bit too slow paced for me to stay focused on it. But I'm hoping that as things finally start happening it will be easier for me.

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  14. DUDE. An All Soul TV series a la Outlander would be AWESOME. I'm glad you liked this despite your issues (me too, LOL). I'm going to start rereading book 2 any day now b/c it's next week that book 3 comes out isn't it? July is such an awesome month for books ;)

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  15. I've had A Discovery of Witches sitting on my bookshelf since it released and I still haven't read it. And I can't explain why. Maybe because I was just breaking into UF at the time? Hopefully, I'll get to it one day. I'm glad you liked it overall, Braine. :)

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